Tropical Storm Sandy is no longer stationary and is moving towards the north-northeast at 3 mph with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph. Tropical storm force winds are extending outward from the center up to 90 miles. A tropical storm warning and a hurricane watch has been issued for Jamaica, and Haiti is still under a tropical storm watch. Tropical storm force winds are expected to reach Jamaica overnight followed by heavy rain. The potential storm surge is expected to raise the 1 to 3 feet above normal tide levels along the southern and eastern coasts of Jamaica coupled with large and destructive waves.
TS Sandy is excepted to reach hurricane strength prior to making landfall in Jamaica on Wednesday. The models show Sandy weakening back to a tropical storm after making landfall in Cuba on Thursday. Although, no longer hurricane strength the maximum sustained winds are expected to be around 70 mph as she reaches the Central Bahamas early Friday morning.
The future forecast path shows the system turning to the north-northeast away from the Northern Bahamas. While Castaway Cay, and Nassau look to be safe from a direct hit, the probability of tropical storm force winds remain around 35%.
Current and Future Cruise Implications
As of this this evening, Disney Cruise Line has not issued any Travel Advisories, as the system is still evolving. Rest assured that the safety of the Guests and crew is DCL’s top priority.
The Disney Fantasy is currently sailing on a 7-Night Eastern Caribbean and based on the current forecast track could encounter the system as the Fantasy makes her way to Castaway Cay on Friday. Friday’s weather forecast on Great Abaco is still calling for heavy rain and wind with a high of 82. The Disney Dream will encounter a similar forecast this Friday during her 3-Night Bahamian Cruise when she is scheduled to call on Nassau, and again Saturday at Castaway Cay. Strong winds make docking at Castaway Cay unsafe.
Once the system interacts with Cuba’s southeast mountainous region we should get a better idea about any possible impacts to this weekend’s cruise schedule.
Tropical Storm Sandy has strengthened over the last few hours with winds reaching 50 mph, as she continues her heading towards Jamaica at 5 mph. A hurricane watch has been issued for Jamaica as TS Sandy is 300 miles south-southwest of Kingston, Jamaica. A hurricane watch has been issued for the south east region of Cuba. Parts of the Central and Southeastern Bahamas are now under a tropical storm watch.
These latest watches do not include Nassau or Castaway Cay, but that may just be temporary as the latest GFSx model shows the system steering awfully close to Nassau.
5 PM Update
Tropical Storm Sandy is still on track for a collision with Jamaica on Wednesday. TS Sandy is moving at 6 mph with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph. Cuba is now under a hurricane warning, Haiti is under a tropical storm warning, and almost all of the Bahamas are under a tropical storm watch this evening.
The outlook has taken a turn for the worse this afternoon with regards to this weekend’s cruises. In fact, the problem is the future forecast no longer indicates a turn to the open waters of the Atlantic until after she passes over the Central and Northern Bahamas.
The probability of tropical storm force winds around Nassau and Castaway Cay have increase from 35% this morning to 50-60%.
11 PM Update
Tropical Storm Sandy has strenthended since the 5 o’clock update. She is moving towards Jamaica on a north-northeast course at 10 mph with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph.
The Central Bahamas are now under a tropical storm warning.